Animation: 'Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2 1/8'?
Posted by Fred Patten on Fri 18 Oct 2013 - 11:02 —
Edited by GreenReaper as of 11:02
The Cartoon Brew has a critique by Amid Amidi of Sony Pictures Animation’s Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2 hybrid CGI/cartoon 6’46” short, “Earl Scouts”, in which Barry the strawberry and one of the pickle foodimals humorously(?) try to kill each other.
Did you know that there were any Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2 short cartoons? I didn’t, but the whole “Earl Scouts” is on YouTube. Seeing is believing … well, not that foodimals are real, but that “Earl Scouts” is. Officer Earl is at the beginning and the end, but most of the short features the two anthropomorphized foodimals. Does Sony Pictures Animation plan any more shorts like this?
About the authorFred Patten — read stories — contact (login required)
a retired former librarian from North Hollywood, California, interested in general anthropomorphics
I saw Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2; didn't think it was furry enough for a review, but it wasn't bad (I still haven't seen the first one). The animation, which really does not look good in stills, has to be seen to "get;" it's very highly stylized, and I liked how it works. A lot of the foodanimals were very creatively done; it actually reminded me a lot of the bizarre critters from The Croods (between those two movies and a new set of Pokémon games, 2013 was a good year for bizarre, almost furry critters).
There were way too many characters with too little to do, and it was the second animated movie of the year after Turbo to use the "childhood hero turns out to be the villain" twist from Up, and it's probably not a coincidence, either, given the production time on these things. It may be just a bad timing thing on Turbo's part, but this is a sequel to a movie that actually came out the same year as Up, and there are other surface similarities between these two movies I'm now suspicious of.
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Oh, sorry. Feel free to one star it; it should fold at about two. Ironically, I don't think I can edit the post now that you've replied to it, but I'l try tonight.
But it isn't really a twist; it's telegraphed from the beginning, and the hero is about the only one surprised.
Of course, I also spoiled Turbo ... no biggie there, and I kinda did that with my review already though. Also, Up. Uh, four year old movie spoiler, so I doubt anybody is too mad at that one.
I enjoyed the sharp contrast in "Earl Scouts" between the CGI animation at the beginning and the 2D Flash(?) animation for most of the short.
Some of the critiques of "Cloudy 2" (those that are real critiques rather than reviews) have praised its very loose animation style in comparison with the "as realistic as possible" style of Pixar's, Blue Sky's, Animal Logic's, and most other CGI studios' styles of animation. One, I think Amid Amidi again, said that it looked like Sony Pictures Animation is trying to keep the old tradition of humorous 1940s and '50s cartoon shorts and directors like Tex Avery and Bob Clampett alive in CGI, while the other studios are using CGI to make their movies look as close to live-action as they can. I don't agree with that completely -- Universal's Illumination Entertainment's "Despicable Me" is pretty "cartoony" -- but there is a lot of truth in the contrast.
The thing that struck me was that there were lots of sight gags that could only be done via aniamtion; the things the villain does with his arms, essentially teleporting them from one gesture to another from off screen ... that sort of thing was not something you see in feature films. Maybe TV cartoons, but not theatical features.
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